DIFF Films with Dystopian Visions
by Alex Garcia Topete
The best science fiction works have one characteristic in common, far beyond imaginative science and technology: they all stand out as reflections and critiques about the present and the past as much as they depict the future. And in such sci-fi tradition, DIFF 2016 has a handful of movies with their lenses set into a tomorrow that may not be as bright and hopeful as we would like—but still as entertaining as possible.
In ORION, writer-director Asiel Norton delivers a view of a post-apocalyptic world in which humans not only have to battle each other for survival in an existence that has regressed to being brutal and short, but also fight against nature, the almighty power dominating the globe.
The future in Claire Carre’s EMBERS unfolds as a literal blank slate for humanity, for no one can remember the past after an epidemic wipes everyone’s memory, thus exploring the possible answers to the question—what becomes of experience and the meaning of human life without a past to shape it?
Finally, in HIGH-RISE, an adaptation from J.G. Ballard’s novel, a luxury building in a not-so-distant future becomes a laboratory of interactions between the high-level tenants and the lower residents, with conflict brewing and sociopolitical commentary aplenty.
Which vision of the future will you choose?
DALLAS STAR AWARDOscar-nominated cinematographer Ed Lachman’s selected credits as a cinematographer include the Emmy nominated HBO mini-series Mildred Pierce and films including DESPERATELY SEEKING SUSAN, THE VIRGIN SUICIDES, and the Academy Award nominated film, CAROL.
DALLAS MAVERICK AWARDOur inaugural honoree, director, editor and producer Monte Hellman, has a career that spans six decades. He has exemplified cutting-edge filmmaking across multiple genres, working with budgets, from high-to-low, and with casts featuring stars to complete unknowns.